Tourist associations tackle overcharging of Chinese visitors

PHUKET: Two Chinese associations in Phuket came together at Tah Chat Chai checkpoint Sunday to distribute brochures detailing ‘fair pricing’ information in order to protect Chinese tourists from being ripped off by tour operators.

Ronnarit Cheunsangarun of the Thai Chinese Tourism Association, Phuket Office; Nonpuree Patarakumakornsakul of the Phuket Chinese Guide Association; and other representatives from both associations handed out the brochures to passengers on buses returning from Phang Nga and Krabi.

The brochure lists hot spots around Phuket, Phang Nga and Krabi, stating that as per ‘government policy’, prices must not exceed 600 yuan (about 3,000 baht) per person per round trip for 16 people.

“There are too many foreign guides who charge more than the normal price range for the tours, which results in misunderstandings and unsatisfied tourists,” said Mr Ronnarit.

“We felt good vibes from the tourists when distributing the brochures, as they will be better prepared to deal with tour guides who try to overcharge them in future.”

The following were listed as the prices of one-day round trips from Phuket:

Koh Phi Phi: Adults 2,000 baht, children 1,700 baht
Phang Nga: Adults 1,200 baht, children 1,000 baht
Racha island: Adults 1,500 baht, children 1,200 baht
Koh Kai Nok: Adults 1,000 baht, children 800 baht
Krabi: Adults 1,200 baht, children 1,000 baht
Similan: Adults 2,500 baht, children 2,200 baht
Koh Kai Nai: Adults 600 baht, children 600 baht

Any tourists who feel they have been unfairly charged can lodge their complaints using the numbers provided in the brochure.

If the tour guides are registered with the Thai Chinese Tourist Association and Chinese Guide Association, they will be punished under the associations’ criteria. If not, they will be legally prosecuted.

— Winai Sarot

Phuket News

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